24 January 2022

The Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) is seeking applications for members on three Management Advisory Committees (MACs) and four Resource Assessment Groups (RAGs), specifically: 

  • South East Management Advisory Committee (SEMAC); 

  • Great Australian Bight Management Advisory Committee (GABMAC); 

  • Southern Bluefin Tuna Management Advisory Committee (SBTMAC); 

  • South East Resource Assessment Group (SERAG); 

  • Southern and Eastern Scalefish and Shark Fishery Resource Assessment Group (SESSFRAG); 

  • Great Australian Bight Resource Assessment Group (GABRAG); and 

  • Shark Resource Assessment Group (SharkRAG). 

The term of appointment is for three years, commencing 1 July 2022 until 30 June 2025. 

More information about MACs, RAGs, the role of members and how to apply is provided below. 

What do MACs do? 

AFMA’s MACs are statutory bodies that provide AFMA with management advice. They report to the AFMA Commission on policy and operational matters, where relevant, relating to the management of Commonwealth fisheries, including scientific, research and other information about the status of fish stocks and the impact of fishing on the marine environment. 

MACs are advised by their respective RAG or relevant regional fisheries management organisations (RFMOs) on the status of fish stocks, sub stocks, species (target and non-target), the impact of fishing on the marine environment and the type of information needed for stock assessments. 

MACs also provide an avenue for consultation between industry, managers, researchers, environment/conservation and State government officers. MAC advice is used to inform AFMA’s management decisions and its MACs continue to be the main source of advice on the management of Commonwealth fisheries. 

Additional information for individual MACs, including records from past meetings, can be found on AFMA’s website at: https://www.afma.gov.au/fisheries/committees 

AFMA’s policy document Fisheries Management Paper 1– Management Advisory Committees (FMP 1) provides information about the roles of MACs and their members. FMP 1 is available on AFMA’s website at: https://www.afma.gov.au/about/fisheries-management-policies/operation-management-advisory-committees 

What do RAGs do? 

AFMA’s RAGs are the key research and scientific committees for supporting the management of Commonwealth fisheries. The main function of RAGs is to peer review scientific data and information and provide advice to AFMA on the status of fish stocks, sub-stocks, species (target and non-target species), the economic status of fisheries and the impact of fishing on the marine environment. This advice assists AFMA in its role to regulate commercial fishing of Commonwealth fisheries. 

A key output of RAGs is the provision of recommended biological catches (RBCs) and biological fishing effort levels. When requested, RAGs evaluate alternative harvest options proposed by MACs. Evaluation could include advising on the impact over time of different harvest strategies (for example, the time required for a particular fish stock to reach a reference point), stock depletion or recovery rates, the confidence levels of the fishery assessments and risks to the pursuit of fishery objectives. RAGs are also required, where relevant, to evaluate and report on economic and compliance factors affecting the performance of fisheries. 

Additionally, RAGs provide an avenue for consultation between industry members, fishery managers, fishery economists, fishery scientists and other interest groups. 

RAGs are appointed by the AFMA CEO under the policy Fisheries Administration Paper 12 – Resource Assessment Groups (FAP 12). Additional information for individual RAGs, including records from past meetings, can be found on AFMA’s website at: https://www.afma.gov.au/fisheries/committees  

AFMA’s policy, FAP 12, provides information about the roles of RAGs and their members. FAP 12 is available on the AFMA website at: https://www.afma.gov.au/about/fisheries-management-policies/fisheries-administration-paper-12-resource-assessment-groups 

Who should apply for MAC/RAG membership? 

Appointments to MACs and RAGs are based on relevant expertise and members are sought for the following positions: 

Position Type                                                MAC/RAG

Industry (various)                                           SEMAC (4), GABMAC (3), SBTMAC (4), SERAG (3), GABRAG (3) & SharkRAG (4) 

Scientific (various)                                         SERAG (4), GABRAG (2), SBTMAC (1), SharkRAG (3), SESSFRAG 1 Ecocsystem expertise sought

Research – with economics expertise (various)  SEMAC (1) & GABMAC (1)  

Economic (various)                                        SERAG (1), GABRAG (1), SESSFRAG (1) & SharkRAG (1) 

Conservation (various)                                  SharkRAG (1), SEMAC (1), GABMAC (1) & SBTMAC (1) 

Recreational/Charter (various)                      SBTMAC (1), SEMAC (1) & SERAG (1) 

How do I apply for MAC/RAG membership? 

To be considered for industry member positions please submit a written expression of interest (no more than one page) identifying the MAC or RAG you are nominating for and outlining your relevant experience and/or qualifications. 

For all other member positions please submit your curriculum vitae and a brief cover note (no more than 500 words) identifying the MAC or RAG position you are nominating for, addressing the relevant criteria under section 3.5 of FMP 1 (for MACs) and section 4.2 of FAP 12 (for RAGs) for the position and summarising your relevant experience, qualifications and reason for your application. 

Selection Process 

Applications will be assessed by a selection panel against the relevant appointment criteria described in section 3.5 of FMP 1 (for MACs) and section 4.2 of FAP 12 (for RAGs). 

How do I submit my application? 

Applications need to be submitted to AFMA by close of business 10 February 2022 by post or email to: 

Post:  Julie Cotsell 

Policy, Environment, Economics and Research 

Fisheries Management Branch 

Australian Fisheries Management Authority 

PO Box 7051 

CANBERRA BC ACT 2610 

Email:  research.secretary [at] afma.gov.au 

Please contact Steve Hall on (02) 6225 5341 or email Steve.Hall [at] afma.gov.au if you require further information about the role of MAC and RAG members and the selection process.